Just the Facts, Please :: Aquatic Therapy in Marathon County

Written by Brad Karger


The future of aquatic therapy at North Central Health Care in Marathon County will be decided soon by the County Board, and the vote is likely to be very close.

Setting the stage for this important decision is the county’s Health and Human Services Committee, which has taken the lead role in gathering information to inform the upcoming policy decision.

Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinions, but for our democracy to function efficiently, we need to share a common set of facts.

The challenge of preparing a Fact Sheet for the County Board is keeping answers “succinct” (i.e., clear and concise). Making a point in just a few well-chosen words is much more difficult than writing longer answers, but is infinitely more effective in informing a large group of policy-makers.

Many Marathon County Board members have probably already decided on how they intend to vote on the borrowing resolution for a new aquatic therapy pool. The few “undecideds” who are left will be looking to the facts generated and summarized by the Health and Human Services Committee to guide their decision. Thus, it’s critically important that this committee get the facts right and presented clearly.

The County Board approved a list of questions that the Health and Human Services Committee was asked to research and answer. Included on this list were:

  1. Why is the aquatic therapy pool needed?
  2. What is the cost of aquatic therapy?
  3. What is the physical condition of the current aquatic therapy pool?
  4. Can we afford a new aquatic therapy pool?

Click here for a full list of the questions the County Board wants answered (and an early draft of answers) crafted for the Health and Human Services Committee to approve.

Because a borrowing resolution requires a super majority to pass (3/4 of membership), the vote is probably going to be close.

The outcome of the vote will likely swing on the amount of private donations that are obtained. The North Central Health Care Foundation believes that a community capital campaign could net $1.5 million in private donations. That might be enough, I don’t know. Less probably won’t be enough, but it’s anyone’s guess what will happen on the day of the vote.

We’ll be sure to keep you posted on the results of the vote in upcoming issues of this newsletter.

For further background on the upcoming vote, I invite you to read “NCHC’s Aquatic Physical Therapy Pool: The Time Is NOW for a Decision.”

Brad Karger - Marathon County AdministratorBrad Karger

Marathon County Administrator

In his Administrator role, Brad Karger leads an organization with 700+ employees and an annual budget of more than $170 million. Brad has been in leadership positions with Marathon County for the past 29 years. He is known statewide for generating innovative ideas and solutions to problems, openness and transparency, and a commitment to community service that extends well beyond the normal workday. Email Brad Karger

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